The Lens of Eros
Originally I presented this chart with no name, for a ‘big reveal’ at the end, but now I’m thinking it doesn’t change a thing perceptually if you recognize this woman’s name. Inspection of Eros in this chart begins with a review of chart circumstances; the chart presented is arresting for a number of reasons aside from the aptness of Eros as a symbol for this woman. We see three placements, the Sun, the Earth, and the Moon, at 29 degrees, signaling the strong need to resolve these energies in their present (sign) form. One, the Aquarius Moon, is the chart ruler, suggesting identification with, and a need to communicate (9th) the emotions through the Higher Mind, but the Aquarius placement alerts us that the emotions might not be easily processed, being routed through the mind presenting an emotional intergration challenge. Kudos to those who recognized the Mystic Rectangle configuration; we must not, however, go overboard with the importance of formations, as they are as significant as any placement, but not more so–they are just a clue as to how the energies are channeled within the individual. Generally, Mystic Rectangles allow two sets of oppositions (in this case, a wide Mars/ South Node/ Neptune/Jupiter cluster in Virgo across the 3rd/ 4th, and the North Node/ Moon/ Pallas in Pisces/ Aquarius in the 9th, and the other opposition of Sun/ Venus/ Uranus in Aries in the 11th and Juno/ Earth in Libra in the 5th) to resolve their tensions through the sextiles and trines made between the components of the two oppositions. Both the Rectangle and the placements at 29 degrees tell us that this woman has a lot of things to work out, a lot of processing to do, and this suggests a certain inherent amount of turmoil in the personality (but doesn’t in any way suggest this woman was unappealing–in fact she was quite popular in her 50s and 60s heyday)
Now, Eros fits into the above dynamic through a single aspect, a trine to Jupiter. Building on the Eros portion of the section in THE ASTROLOGY OF INTIMATE RELATIONSHIP, ‘Vesta, Eros, Sappho, and Amor,’ we recall that Eros’ basic erotic energy is the (sometimes easily distorted) sexualizing of someone or something. We may ask, then, if Eros’ effect is primarily internal, affecting our own ideas of sexuality, or does the Eros placement send a sort of signal that may be received (and possibly misperceived) by others? The answer to that is ‘yes’ and ‘yes,’ and the chart below is a good example of this. Eros is at 14 Capricorn (though it is not marked in the chart), placing it in the 7th of all others, the audience, the mate, for this several times married woman. It makes only a couple of aspects, but they are very significant, as is Eros itself, to this woman’s identity: Eros is just outside the usually stringent limits I impose on a quincunx, this one to Vesta in the 12th, yet I feel it should be counted–and this gives us a big clue, that this woman likely saw the erotic in sacred terms–and Eros also makes a trine to Jupiter and a sextile to the Midheaven. When we look at this chart and the Eros situation with the idea in mind of Eros informing the way others saw this woman, and how this woman may have seen her Eros ‘from the inside,’ then we must look to Jupiter to understand how it manifested in her life. Jupiter is placed in the 4th of family and deepest Self, and rules the intercepted 6th, funneling Eros into the daily/ work situation. So, since this is a well-known individual, we might surmise that Eros, in some form, was her ‘job.’
This woman may have carried in the unconscious the idea of Eros and the erotic as a sacred concept, a manifestation of the divine in the physical (Vesta in the 12th, Eros in the 7th). It seems that this might have allowed her to employ her sexuality in almost a ‘pure’ way, with an acceptance and understanding of human sexual nature that went against the grain of what was accepted from ‘good girls’ of the time–and yet her chart tells us that she was likely a very ‘good girl’ in terms of having a strong sense of honor and integrity (Vesta, NN + Moon + Pallas emphasizing female wisdom, Neptune + Jupiter conjunct in Virgo telling us of high social ideals, a strong demonstrated interest in religion–she was a lifelong Christian–and perhaps some stringent judgmental standards). Eros’ contact with Jupiter suggests that she saw the erotic as a natural part of the social order–and with her Eros in the 7th, others were more than willing to designate her an erotic object, which was indeed what her career was built on, and this is in some ways unfortunate: the erotic designation made her an object, rather than a dimensional woman, for many, and she was never truly able to move past this, with her career largely made up of ‘B’ movies. She was reliably reputed to have an IQ of 163 (but does her Mercury quincunx the South Node and sextile Saturn indicate that she repressed her intelligence in order to succeed?), she spoke five languages, and she died early, at age 34.
She married early, too, the first time at age 16 (Solar Arc Jupiter quincunx the Moon–adjustments to the social place in order to change her female role?) and attended several Universities, U of Texas at Austin and UCLA among them. Married three times with five children, she was one of the earliest entertainers to understand the value of self-promotion. Though successful, she became a victim of both her own image, that of the ‘blonde bombshell,’ and the changing aesthetic of the 60s, which left the exaggerated sexuality (Eros/ Jupiter) of the 50s behind. Her biggest success was her stage and screen role in ‘Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter?’ Those under 40 may be shaking their heads in puzzlement right now, while those older probably remember this actress, Jayne Mansfield, as one of the actresses lumped into the same category as Marilyn Monroe and Mamie Van Doren, platinum blondes cast in the quintessential mold of 50s sexuality. Those younger may note that she is the mother of actress Mariska Hargitay of ‘Law and Order’; all of us may note that she is an excellent example of the way Eros can label, permeate, or even, as in this case, run away with a chart and its possibilities.